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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

New Tobacco-Free Parks Directory Launched Today!

New Tobacco-Free Parks Directory
Launched in Conjunction with
World No Tobacco Day

Website to help Minnesotans find tobacco-free parks

Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation (TFYR), a program of the Association for Nonsmokers - Minnesota (ANSR), has launched a new online directory with information about all the tobacco-free park systems in Minnesota. The database will be launched in conjunction with World No Tobacco Day on May 31, 2011. World No Tobacco Day was created by the World Health Organization in 1987, as a way to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable diseases and death it causes.

TFYR was launched in 2000 to provide assistance and information to Minnesota communities interested in adopting a tobacco-free policy for their outdoor recreation areas. Since then, a total of 136 communities have made their parks tobacco free. Due to the wealth of information about tobacco-free park systems across the state, TFYR decided to launch the directory to better serve Minnesota residents. "We often get asked about which communities have tobacco-free policies and what type of amenities are included," said Derek K. Larsen, TFYR Program Coordinator. "We felt this directory would be a great way for the public to find tobacco-free recreation facilities where they live." According to TFYR, approximately 70% of the state's population is covered by a tobacco-free park policy as well as 90% of residents in the 7-county Twin Cities metro area.

The directory can be found at and includes a variety of search options for residents to find many tobacco-free recreation amenities such as beaches, athletic fields, playgrounds, and trails. "Many of the questions we received are from people who live in an area without coverage and want to know where they can take their families and enjoy a healthy afternoon in a beautiful park system," Larsen said. "This database will make it so much easier for them to find a healthy place to play."

Please share this information with friends and co-workers to let everyone know about this exciting new service. If you have any questions about the new directory or if you would like to let us know what you think please contact Derek K. Larsen at or 651-646-3005.

About Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation
Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation assists Twin Cities metro area communities in adopting tobacco-free policies for their park areas. If there are any questions about tobacco-free parks, please contact Brittany McFadden, Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation director at (651) 646-3005 or, or go to

Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation's directory was made possible through funding the Tobacco-Free Communities (TFC) grant program of the Minnesota Department of Health.

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